lhskarka: (Wonder Woman)
My short list of the changes I think we need to make in this country to help prevent these tragic mass-murders from happening. Easy? No. Necessary? Yes.

1) Dear Media - Stop reporting the names of the killers. Call them gunmen, or murderers, or shooters, or killers, but do not give them the immortality of being a name in the news. It is enough that their names are part of the public record in police and other reports. Unless we are directly affected by one of these tragedies, we do not need to know. Let us remember the names of their victims, instead.

2) As a society, as a government, via a national healthcare system, we need to provide compassionate mental health care for people, within their own communities, so that more people can receive the care they need before they are driven to harm themselves and others. Giant government institutions might not have been the answer, but shutting those down and turning the entire burden of care onto families and individuals certainly isn't working.

3) We need better gun control. I have known sane, safe, reasonable people who own and operate guns all my life. I have no problem with sane, safe, reasonable people having reasonable guns. What I DO want is for both guns and gun owners to be "well-regulated", as stated by the 2nd Amendment. The best idea that I have seen on how to go about this is simple. Regulate ownership & operation of guns exactly the way we regulate ownership & operation of cars:
a) Title and tag at each point of sale.
b) Training in proper use & handling.
c) Both written and practical tests required for use.
d) Health requirements for operation.
e) Liability insurance for each gun.
f) Renewals and inspections required at intervals for both the owner & the machine.
I do not see anything in that list that a safe, sane & reasonable gun owner could argue against.

4) I would add two regulations to the above list that people probably would argue about, but they're necessary.
a) Mandatory psychiatric evaluations for first-time gun purchasers. No system can be foolproof, but having an additional filter between unstable people and guns would still help to cut down on mass-murder.
b) Federal penalties for the illegal/unregistered ownership of a gun, with a mandatory additional sentence of, say, ten years, for use of a weapon in the commission of any crime. This one has nothing to do with mental stability, and everything to do with the simple fact that taking a gun (or hell, let's be silly, a bow & arrows, or a sword) to commit a crime is pre-meditation for the potential harm of another. and that should not be tolerated.

I really don't think that any of this is too much to ask of a civilized society.

Addendum: I am seriously tired of the "if only someone/a teacher at Sandy Hook had been armed". Exactly how did that help anyone who was killed by the Fort Hood gunman?

*Steps off soapbox*
lhskarka: (Default)
Dear Republicans/Tea Party/salt of the earth/people of the land/morons -

The people that you just voted back in to office are the same people who were IN CHARGE when the economy tanked two years ago. And they had been for at least eight years.

The people you just voted out of office are the people who apparently didn't fix the mess that the other guys left behind fast enough for you.

So, thanks for nothing, goldfish brains.


PS - I would like to actually thank [livejournal.com profile] mckitterick for the link to What the fuck has Obama done so far?. Check it out. It has provided me with a small band-aid for the sucking chest wound created by the words "Governor-Elect Sam Brownback".
lhskarka: (Default)
Kansas House OKs covenant marriage legislation
The Associated Press Thu, Feb. 18, 2010 08:30 PM

Kansas would become the fourth state in the nation to allow covenant marriage under a bill progressing in the House. Covenant marriage would be a voluntary agreement committing a couple to a higher threshold for divorce than conventional marriage. Language creating the option was added Thursday to a bill on common law marriage. The House gave the bill first-round approval.

Proponents say the option would strengthen marriages in Kansas. Couples choosing covenant marriage would have to receive premarital counseling and sign an affidavit stating their intentions.

Opponents say the law would force couples to stay in relationships that may be harmful.

Arkansas, Arizona and Louisiana already have covenant marriage laws.

Covenant Marriage Links

about.com marriage

wikipedia entry

Because obviously, Kansas should be more like Arkansas and Lousiana. UGH!

Here's the thing - I do happen to think that if you're going to bother to get married, it should be something that you plan to stick with, where you agree to work through your problems together, instead of running for the hills because it's hard to do that. Because healthy adult relationships have their ups and downs. But that isn't the states business in any way, shape or form, and they need to keep OUT of it. Especially not when by doing so, they create a situation where people could become even more trapped in unhealthy or abusive relationships. That's not just wrong - it's sick.
lhskarka: (Default)
We are giving the BBC a giggle this morning. The announcers on BBC America were nearly laughing aloud during their broadcast.

Because seriously, how many other countries can have a news day like this?

President Barack Obama Awarded Nobel Peace Prize

On the same day that

NASA bombs the moon?

In local news, I had a really nice time last night. (And Hooray for [livejournal.com profile] everflame and her awesome accomplishment!)

This morning I am strangely dizzy. Not feverish, or with a sore throat, or anything else that feels wrong. Just mildly dizzy. I think perhaps my ears are stuffed up?
lhskarka: (Default)
Okay, so I know it's great and all that President Obama's cabinet is now complete with the addition of Kathleen Sebelius. And I'm sure that she'll do a wonderful job as our new secretary of health and human services.

But I can't help but feel a little bit abandoned...*sigh*
lhskarka: (Default)
My head is splitting, but my heart is singing!

Among many other wonderful attributes, our new President is articulate, intelligent, and a writer!

I AM SO HAPPY!!!!!!!!
lhskarka: (Default)

We, the United States of America, your top quality supplier of the ideals of liberty and democracy, would like to apologize for our 2001-2008 interruption in service. The technical fault that led to this eight-year service outage has been located, and the software responsible was replaced November 4. Early tests of the newly installed program indicate that we are now operating correctly, and we expect it to be fully functional on January 20. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the outage. We look forward to resuming full service and hope to improve in years to come. We thank you for your patience and understanding.


I don't usually pass around "amusing" e-mail forwards, but I liked this one.
lhskarka: (Default)

Weight is up, endurance is down. Stairclimbing an average of 15 minutes a day is obviously not enough. To counteract these things, I started swimming last night. Score: Laura 1, Body 0. Owww. I way overestimated the length of time I can currently spend swimming laps. My legs were literally wobbling when I got out of the pool. Answer is of course, swimming more often for less time. Good thing I like swimming.


Positive Reinforcement.

I support Barack Obamba for President because he actually answers my questions:

And because I agree with Joe Biden about a lot of issues.

And because I want smart, honest people in charge of my country.

lhskarka: (Default)
Just in case what you have already heard about Sarah Palin didn't frighten you enough, I spotted this list in the "Deadwood" Edition of the Lawrence.com paper. Links are provided by me because I didn't want to simply pass on the list without any backing evidence. Any additional thoughts or notes added by me are in italics. Anything in bold has been discussed/proven by more than one news source, so I didn't link to them.

Sarah Palin...

1) ...believes that creationism should be taught in schools.

2) ...is opposed to abortion even in the cases of rape and incest, belongs to a group which believes birth control is a form of abortion, and opposes stem cell research.

3) ...is under investigation by the Alaska state legislature for abuse of power in the firing of a state employee, which was allegedly part of a vendetta against her former brother-in-law.

4) ...is a proponent of abstinence-only education, although her 17-year-old daughter is now pregnant out of wedlock.

5) ...admitted in an interview with CNBC, a month before she accepted the position, that she has no idea what a vice-president does.

6) ...has only been governor for 20 months, before which she was mayor of a town of 6,000 to 9,000 (the number varies by report).

7) ...left that town, Wasilla, with a huge budget deficit due to legal battles involving her poor use of eminent domain to seize private land.

8) ...was supported in her gubernatorial run by Jack Abramoff.

9) ...thinks the “Pledge of Allegiance” was written by the Founding Fathers. (It was written in 1892 by Frances Bellamy. And the words "under God" were added in 1951.) I could not find anything that actually states that she thought the Founding Fathers WROTE the Pledge, only that she thought it was "good enough for them", indicating that she thinks they knew about it.

10) ...was a local sportscaster for the Anchorage nightly news in 1988 and a beauty queen – voted Miss Wasilla in 1984. True? Yes. Relevent to the discussion? No. Not when a pro-wrestler has served as governor in another state and a B-list actor spent 8 years in the White House.

11) ...owns four houses. Go to the linked website and open her "2007 financial disclosure form".

12) Her husband Todd Palin is on the payroll of oil giant BP.

13) ...opposes the decision listing polar bears as an endangered species, and sued the federal government to overturn the decision.

14) ...received thousands ($5,000) of dollars from VECO, an oil services company accused of paying bribes to indicted Alaska senator Ted Stevens.

15) Despite distancing herself from the indicted Senator since then, she was director of Stevens’ Political Action Committee in 2003.

16) ...didn’t have a passport until 2007. I'm not sure what this really has to do with her ability to govern, other than as a further indication of her closed-mindedness, so I haven't checked it out. After all, I'm older than she is and I don't have mine. Of course, if I had the money to travel, I would have a long time ago.

17) ...doesn’t believe global warming is man-made.

18) John McCain only met her once before deciding to name her as his running mate.

19) Despite her recent claims otherwise, she supported the infamous “Bridge to Nowhere”, and only cancelled it because she didn’t think the federal government was paying enough for it.

20) ...belongs to a church with ties to “Joel’s Army”, a militant strain of dominionists who believe the world should be governed by Christian theocracy in anticipation of the Armageddon.
Text from the Assembly of God Newsletter )

To sum up: Yikes! This woman scares me, and the thought of her as next in line to the presidency makes me more than a bit sick.

Let's not let that happen, shall we?
lhskarka: (Default)
Part 1

Part 2

Here's the MSNBC website link if you prefer: Click here.

This is his special commentary from last night on Bush's most recent interview, the one where Bush claims he quit playing golf to show solidarity with the families who have lost loved ones to his idiotic war.

The last line is the best.
lhskarka: (Default)
Funny joke, scary prediction, or both?

Diebold Accidentally Leaks Results Of 08 Election

It did make me laugh, so I'll stick with "joke" for now...
lhskarka: (Default)
Wall Street Journal article
Article saved behind cut. )

And according to NPR, at least five retired 4-star generals refused to be considered for the post. Maybe because they think that the War Czar Commander-in-Chief should be, oh, I don't know...the President?!


lhskarka: (Default)

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